Agent Orange and the caused birth defects
Ms. PJ Rosch
December 8, 2008
In 1959 my father went to Vietnam because the president sent him there. In 1975 he came home to a county that despised him. And thanks to the government he had fought for so valiantly, He also came home sick from the exposure of Agent Orange. For my final paper I chose to write about Agent Orange and the caused birth defects resulting from it. I feel that this subject falls under the role of government, environmental issues, and ethical integrity. The record of unintended and disregarded ecological harm caused by the U.S. armed forces is atrocious. Twenty five years after the Vietnam War was over, the U.S. government only now nominally recognizes the deadly affects of expansively used defoliants on United States armed forces of the time, and nearly none for Vietnamese and Cambodian inhabitants. The Pentagon's long-drawn-out and brutal crusade to defy the accusations of Vietnam veterans, who contracted Agent Orange related conditions during the Vietnam War, was replicated during the Gulf War, veterans suffering from 'Gulf War Syndrome'. (Nautilus Institute at RMIT, Published as "Power talk: sensô, kankyô, risuku shakairon [Power Talk: War, the Environment, and the Theory of Risk Society]", Matsuo Makoto (ed.), Kyôkan Suru Kankyôgaku, (Kyoto: Mineruba Shobô, 2000). I am horrified that the country that my father believed in so fiercely, could expose him, and thru him, his family, to a poison that slowly killed him, and condemned his family to wonder the rest of their lives if they might develop cancer or worse.
Exposing the connection between Agent Orange and the resulting birth defects in the offspring of Vietnam veterans was thwarted by administrative lethargy, the prejudice of governmental policies and the official procedures, and conflict amid a range of government divisions and veterans of different wars. From beginning to end one...